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My wife and I are shopping for a house that we can use as a vacation home for our family and as an Airbnb when we’re not using it. One of the places we’re considering has an awesome living/dining space with an open kitchen—which we love. However, the bedrooms are relatively small. One is 11x12’, another is 12x10’, and a third is 12x14’. These are official dimensions; with the closets, they’re somewhat smaller.
The bedrooms are fine for our family’s use, but we’re wondering whether Aitbnb clients typically want spacious bedrooms. This house definitely sacrifices bedroom size for common space, and we’d like to make sure that it won’t get poor reviews because of the bedrooms. We’ve gotten conflicting advice about this from friends, with some saying they think Airbnb’ers want nice big living spaces and others saying they typically want more spacious bedrooms.
I should add that our clientele where we’re looking (the Poconos in PA) are likely to be outdoorsy, attracted to local skiing and hiking—not there for extended work trips, etc.
I think it would be fine. Put a queen bed in the biggest one if you can and the others can have full sized or even bunks in one. Two twins might be crowded. Just make them very cozy. My family rents a three bedroom lakeside with similar accommodations. We are usually in the common rooms or outside. With three bedroom I’m usually more concerned that there are enough bathrooms.
I have a small Airbnb. The original bedroom was 10x11. I’ve made some changes but the whole suite including bathroom, dining nook, coffee bar and entry area is 230 sf. I’ve never had a bad review related to size. But I’m also very clear in the listing about the room size. As long as you advertise honestly you shouldn’t have a problem.
I agree with Christine that common space is more important than size of sleeping spaces.
I only host a private room/bathroom for 1 guest and they share my kitchen and outdoor spaces, plus there’s a balcony outside their room with seating.
I only host for one guest because that room can only fit a single bed without being cramped. The room is a very unusual shape, like an L. The leg of the L with the bed is only 1.7 meters wide by about 2.8 meters long and the other leg, which has a built in desk/counter all along the wall and leads into their ensuite bathroom, is about 2 meters long by a meter wide.
All my guests have said they love the room. It doesn’t feel claustrophobic because it has lots of windows, one on every wall, and a high ceiling.
The thing with small rooms is just to make sure you arrange furniture so there is ample space to move around, don’t put too much furniture in, and keep it simple- don’t clutter it up with decorative knicknacks. Because my counter/desk and the closet are built ins, the only furniture in that room is the bed, the nightstand, and a chair.
Mirrors also help to make a small space feel larger.
Small bedrooms are fine. I sleep in bedrooms, not hold conferences in them.
Worst thing you can do IMHO is not have a bedside table and light on each side of each bed. Some place to set my phone/alarm, glasses, and book when I get ready to turn out my side light and sleep. As an Air Guest I will mention this as a lack if they aren’t there…
Agree. Pet peeve. I always read for awhile before going to sleep. Having to get out of bed to go turn off a light, which isn’t suitable for reading anyway, is really annoying.
A new host on the CC was asking some questions, I looked at her listing- she had a really low table next to the bed (and no table on the other side of the queen bed) with a lamp on it, but the top of the lamp was still below the level of the mattress. It was pointless.
And on top of that, she had that little low table completely covered with the lamp, a potted plant, and some useless decorations. There was zero room for guests to put anything of their own on it without moving everything somewhere else.
She also had the coffee station and the mini fridge inside the closet on a low shelf, with the clothes bar and hangars right in front and above it. You’d have to push your clothes aside to get to the coffee maker, probably get coffee stains on your clothes, not to mention the set up was a serious fire hazard.
@Ritz3 is absolutely right. And - be sure you can afford it even if it doesn’t rent. Counting on renting it out in order to pay the mortgage is risky. I’m sure more than one homeowner had to sell or take other drastic measures during the pandemic because they were overextended and couldn’t afford the second home with no guests.
One more caution. Be careful with pictures. We once had a professional photographer shoot our bedroom and bathroom. The pictures were lovely but made the rooms look deceptively large thus setting us up to appear inaccurate to guests when they saw the actual rooms.
Also, just be clear with your photos so you don’t mislead guests. Use descriptors like “cozy, but with all the essentials (lamps, etc)” for bedrooms and “spacious” for the living areas. In general, guests who want spacious bedrooms should know to move on. And guests who dig the photos of your big living space will sign on.
I use a standard bedroom size for a king size bed - 12 feet by 12 feet. That is the bedroom size in all 3 of our cabins, and we set them up with a king size bed, two end tables, and an armoire. Most of our guests are here for less than a week, and most of their time is spent away from our farm. Each cabin has a decent deck, but the two smaller ones have a kitchenette (microwave, dorm fridge, and coffee maker), with a grill on the deck. We let everyone know what the space is, that it has a full bathroom with a shower, that the cabin is 16 feet by 18 feet, and are very clear in our pictures. No one in 4 years has complained about the size.
We have smallish rooms in our ski/ hiking location. I noticed that I get mostly 2 sets of couples staying. I feel it’s important to have proper bed sized for each couple. One room has a king and the other has a queen. Each is outfitted very comfortably.
My husband and I have noticed when we stay in rentals that the second bedroom is often a lower quality bed/ linens and fitted with only one nightstand.
Those sound like normal sized bedrooms. The’ll fit a queen bed and if there is a closet you don’t need a dresser, just some bedside tables. If the room nicely decorated, bed is comfy and the furnishings are nice you’ll be fine. It doesn’t need to be big, just inviting and convenient. I’d recommend putting up hooks for things like jackets and bags and shelving in the closet. People who are vacation don’t usually hang out in the bedrooms (unless they are teens and then they won’t care as long as there is a door).
Our bedrooms are also on the smaller size-but have a huge main floor that is all open and a large deck off that-people love it! One bedroom is 13”11x12 another is 13”1x13”3 and the last is 11x1x15”11-I think our overall sq footage for 3bd is under 1700!
There is a lot you can do to make the space feel more open (floating side tables, wall mounted bedside lamps, etc) keep the decorations to a minimum and use quality linens etc and ensure place is clean and i feel like you won’t go wrong! As others have said bunkbeds vs twins and queen beds super smart and ultimately we have never had a complaint on space -we do limit groups to no more than 10 and that helps too!
It depends a lot on the placement of windows and doors, too. at 10.5’ wide, my architect told me we definitely couldn’t have a kind bed in the bedroom. But we do, and it’s plenty of room. I think the door being a pocket door that opens onto the pathway between the foot of the closet, and the glass slider directly opposite makes it feel more spacious. If the door opened next to the bed, it might cause a problem.
I own a vacation rental outside of Sequoia National Park with the same kind of outdoor activities. Two of the bedrooms are small with a slightly larger master bedroom. We have literally had thousands of guests in the last 4 years and no-one has ever mentioned the size of the bedrooms. I think it’s a lot more important what you do with the space you have. Good luck.